I was too late to join the hop this week, but the questions from Eden Ashe are too interesting to just let slip through my fingers. Here are my responses, and then a link to get you all started on the hop.
How much free reign do you give your characters during a story?
Free reign, eh? I’ve given this considerable thought and still don’t quite know how to respond. Do I, or don’t I? Is one answer the wrong one over the other, I wonder? Yikes. I think to give a character free reign means the author has stepped out of their ‘author’ shell while reigning in characters who want to stray or misbehave means paying close attention to what is actually occurring in any one scene.
This might mean both answers are right. I would have to say I reign them in but don’t consider them as the culprit but rather me and my own wandering imagination. It’s easy to stray in the middle of a scene if something pops into my head and sounds logical, interesting, or better than what I had planned originally.
The key is probably in the way it’s edited. If that character’s changes veered too far off course and redesigned the rest of the story, if those changes turned into a new story, and if those changes have nothing to do with the story’s original intent . . . bad character! Or, in my case, bad me!
Have your characters ever done something so out of the blue that not only changed your story, but changed the tone and maybe even the genre you were originally going for? (Like your contemporary romance turned into a spicy paranormal)
Yes, indeed. I was never interested in paranormal, which I sometimes confuse with fantasy, and is there even a fantasy genre? Still confused, but not to stray . . . yes, I started writing a typical contemporary when it occurred to me that my long-ago idea about creating a world that goes entirely against history’s grain would fit in nicely with the contemporary characters I’d created.
My first paratasy was born LOL. No, I think it’s quite paranormal with a lot of fantasy involved, but then what paranormal isn’t fantasy? *Sigh, still confused.
Do you have one character in your head that is sort of boss over all the rest? Or do you decide who to work on and when?
Oh, yeah. One character in particular is usually boss throughout the story, but when it is time to edit, that is when I concentrate on each individual character in order to spice up, tone down, bring in, or push back their story lines. It is usually when the deaths occur.
Realizing one too many characters are spoiling the flow and need to be removed for another story perhaps. Still, when it comes to rough first drafts, I usually tend to concentrate on a sole character throughout, and it is usually the lead male or female.
Great set of questions, Eden! Just wish I had been in time to sign up to participate. And now to get the real party started, please hop on over to Brenda Margriet’s blog and find out how she responded.
As ever, much obliged to have you visit my blog! All comments encouraged 😀